The development of contour processing abilities in the second year

Samuel Forbes, Kim Plunkett

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Recent years have seen a rise in the popularity of eye-tracking methods to evaluate infant and toddler interpretation of visual stimuli. The application of these methods makes it increasingly important to understand the development of infant sensitivity to the perceptual properties implicated in such methods. In light of recent studies that demonstrate the use of pseudoisochromatic plates in testing infants for color vision, we investigated the perceptual contouring abilities required to pass a color-vision test of this type. A total of 115 (51 female) 16- and 19-month-old U.K.-based participants from the Oxfordshire region participated in this study. The evidence collected in this study indicated their ability to systematically fixate a contoured target, but the speed at which they did so was much slower in the younger age group. These findings suggest that the perceptual contouring abilities implicated in this study are still under development in the second year of life, and as such, the results suggest a lower age limit for color-vision tests displayed in this format.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)639–650
Number of pages12
JournalDevelopmental Psychology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2021

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